Friday, 3 June 2011

Subject or Participant?

Gabriel Almond and Sidney Verba, according to Wikipedia, outlined three pure types of political culture:
  • Parochial - Where citizens are only remotely aware of the presence of central government, and live their lives near enough regardless of the decisions taken by the state. Distant and unaware of political phenomena. He has neither knowledge or interest in politics. In general congruent with a traditional political structure.
  • Subject - Where citizens are aware of central government, and are heavily subjected to its decisions with little scope for dissent. The individual is aware of politics, its actors and institutions. It is effectively oriented towards politics, yet he is on the "downward flow" side of the politics. In general congruent with a centralized authoritarian structure.
  • Participant - Citizens are able to influence the government in various ways and they are affected by it. The individual is oriented toward the system as a whole, to both the political and administrative structures and processes (to both the input and output aspects). In general congruent with a democratic political structure.
I wonder if many voters in the UK feel to be subjects of the political system? I wonder if they feel that their votes have any meaningful power to choose policy or just to change the "rulers"? Interactive Democracy is far more participative.
(Thanks to wikipedia.)

No comments: